England v Samoa: Rugby League World Cup
BRITISH BLUE: Victor Radley was in the NSW extended squad before deciding to play for England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

From junior football in Cloverly to the World Cup in Wigan, Victor Radley and Lachlan Lam have shared a tight bond that they'll set aside in this weekend's sudden-death World Cup quarter-final.

Lam, the halfback for the Papua New Guinea international team, is faced with an almost insurmountable assignment in upsetting England in their next World Cup clash.

To do it he will have to line up opposite his teammate and friend of nearly 20 years, Victor Radley.

England v Samoa: Rugby League World Cup
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 15: England player Victor Radley in action during Rugby League World Cup 2021 Pool A match between England and Samoa at St. James Park on October 15, 2022 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

The two played together as seven-year-olds at the Clovelly Crocodiles and realised their NRL dreams by playing together at the Sydney Roosters between 2019 and 2021.

"I don't think I've ever played against him, maybe as a schoolboy," Radley said in a conversation with the AAP.

"It'll be a tough match with PNG. He (Lam) has been a big part of my life and (Lam's father) Adrian has been a massive part of my football career."

Adrian Lam is a Roosters' legend himself, with 146 games in the Tri-colours as well as 14 Origin call-ups for Queensland and roles as both the captain and coach of PNG.

"It's funny, seven years old from Burrows Park on the cliff there at Clovelly (to the world stage)," Radley continued.

"Adrian always believed we'd be here. I remember him saying we would play in the NRL together. It's all because of him that we are here."

Adrian Lam also commented on Radley's history with his son ahead of Sunday's World Cup contest.

"I said to some people back at home he would be England's best player at this tournament," Lam told the AAP of Radley.

"A lot of people questioned him in England, but I knew he would win them over pretty quickly.

"It's an incredible journey they've both had to get here."

Adrian now coaches his son as part of the newly-rebranded Leigh Leopards, who have secured promotion to the 2023 Super League competition.